EU rules in favor of "right to be forgotten" in Google lawsuit

Posted by: Jennifer Cefai (2 years, 5 months ago)

The EU has ruled in favor of the so-called "right to be forgotten," in a case brought forward against Google. The ruling means that, if requested, Google will be bound to edit certain searches in order to protect certain user data. The Luxembourg-based European Union Court of Justice, which enforced the ruling, said that people had the right to request removal of any information that had become "inadequate, irrelevant or no longe relevant."

The case in question concerned a Spanish national, who complained that a search of his name in Google brought up results of a 16-year-old legal case against him that had otherwise been resolved. His case is not the first of its kind: a number of similar cases in Spain want Google to delete their personal information from search results.

The decision was welcomed by EU Commissioner Viviane Reding, who called it "a clear victory for the protection of personal data of Europeans." Anti-censorship groups have condemmed the decision, which they say "allows individuals to complain to search engines about information they do not like with no legal oversight" and "violates the fundamental principles of freedom of expression." 

Google itself called the decision "disappointing" and addressed that it does not control data more than offer links to information that is freely available to be offered. "We now need to take time to analyze the implications," stated a Google representative.

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